BiAffect app tracks mental health through typing patterns

"Mental Health Tracker"

Dr. Alex Leow, a psychiatrist and computer scientist from the University of Illinois Chicago, is the mind behind “BiAffect,” a novel app that leverages keyboard activity to detect user behavior and infer mental health states. Inspired by her observations of the similarities between typing and piano playing patterns, Dr. Leow employs typing speed, keystroke rhythms, and spelling mistakes as key indicators of emotional state changes.

The app primarily caters to individuals coping with mood disorders like bipolar disorder and provides valuable insights into their mental state. With each keystroke, BiAffect enhances its understanding of the user’s mental health, thus creating a real-time mental health map. This intricate process aims to revolutionize mental health monitoring, analysis, and treatment on a global scale.

The app continues to evolve, collecting significant data volumes to enhance its accuracy thanks to the active participation of more than 2700 users. Apart from acting as a data collection tool, the app educates users on mood disorder indications and offers personalized mood variation feedback. Consequently, BiAffect serves as both a research tool and a companion for users on their mental health journey.

The app features like the ability to detect fluctuations in mood, monitor phone usage, and infer social anxiety from message responses. It also includes a diary entry feature for users to record their thoughts, contributing to a comprehensive digital portrait of a person’s mental and emotional state.

Monitoring mental health via BiAffect app

The data gathered provides psychiatrists with a powerful tool for early detection and diagnosis of mental disorders.

The apps work silently to monitor user behavior and issue alerts if any sudden changes indicate a potential shift in mental state. These alerts encourage users to consult mental health professionals or their support networks if necessary. However, the app does not replace professional medical advice and treatment despite its advanced analysis capabilities.

In conclusion, mood-tracking apps like BiAffect are crucial tools in modern digital mental health care. Even though such apps cannot diagnose or cure diseases in the US, they still provide essential information for managing and understanding mental health issues. Moreover, they empower individuals dealing with mental conditions through constant contact, communication, and awareness. However, users should always remember that these apps should supplement professional health services and should not serve as a primary treatment source.

A prominent psychiatric institution leader advocates for incorporating these tools into mental health care, highlighting their tremendous value. He emphasizes the need to revolutionize traditional mental healthcare and envisions a future where these tools are integrated into mainstream medicine to improve diagnosis and advance treatment approaches.

Latest from NewsReports